Thursday, 4 September 2014

Fashion Awareness Direct (FAD) Fashion Futures Final

So September has rolled around again, which means it's fashion month! Exciting, eh?

Well, I'm excited about this month in particular because I've been lucky enough to be offered the opportunity to attend FAD's Fashion Future's final at London Fashion Week! How great is that?!

....What's that you say? What the blooming hell is FAD, you ask? Well then, let me enlighten you.

Fashion Awareness Direct, more simply FAD, is a registered charity in the UK which creates creative opportunities for young people between 15 and 25 years. Their expertise and workshops enlighten young people of how to realise their potential and bridge that daunting (speaking from experience here, guys) gap between education and successful careers in the fashion industry.

I was part of a one-day FAD workshop when I attended the Intensive Journalism course I was blabbing about a couple months ago. We went out and did a little street style photography, shop reports and created trend mood-boards based on our findings. I really enjoyed the experience and made some great contacts, which got me this show reporting gig for the FAD Fashion Futures final.

Finalist, Daniella, with her final design.

FAD offer several different programs, but their main program is the Fashion Futures course - which this year celebrates an astounding 10 years of inspiring young people!! This consists of learning all the practical skills required to design and create a garment.

Toni with her final design
This year 23 finalists who've passed through the program are showcasing their final design at London Fashion Week. You can learn more about the finalists here.

Renee with her final design. All images sourced from FAD blog.

The skills FAD provide participants are incredibly valuable, "It's not enough anymore to have 3 A's at A-Level", says finalist Daniela, and she's right. Programs like FADs' are helping future creatives to stand out from the crowd when applying to Universities and jobs. Charities like FAD are a necessity for helping young people learn more about the industry; if you can spare any money, any and all donations will be of a huge benefit to the charity and the future generations of creatives and designers in England.

I'm really looking forward to seeing all of the finalists offerings in person at Fashion Week, and to sharing my show report with you all.

All the best,


Dr. Martens: Heritage British Brand

Always at the forefront of British alternative and youth culture, Dr. Martens began life humbly as the boots for policemen and industrial workers. But in the 1950's when youth came to realise they no longer wanted to look like their parents, Dr. Martens came into play.

It was the skinheads who first adopted the boot, prior to Pete Townsend of The Who donning a pair of classic 1460s on stage and bringing the brand to the attention of the masses. Soon after, a pair of Docs became a part of every youth culture's look.

Today, Dr. Martens are putting their prices of two of their classic designs back to their 1960s original price...£3.

I didn't personally fancy fighting my way through the carnage on Carnaby Street to get a pair, but good luck to all of those at the 4 stores involved.

Dr. Marten's current campaign asks us: what do you stand for?

Me? I stand for adventure, equality and freedom (especially when I'm wearing my floral 1461s).

What do you stand for?


Designers/ Up and Coming Talent: Jane Bowler

Hi everyone. I hope everyone has had an enjoyable summer break - time to get back to work though, unless you're a designer like Jane Bowler, whose been working hard all summer promoting her kick-starter project.

Azealia Banks shot by Rankin for Hunger Magazine

It's likely that perhaps you haven't heard of Jane Bowler - I myself hadn't until I went on a fashion design course at the V&A museum in April run by the young designer in question.

My work from Bowler's workshop at the V&A. Via her Instagram.

If I remember correctly, Jane Bowler studied her foundation degree at the brilliant Loughborough University (the UK's top sports university - but also acclaimed for their art department) before continuing to study at the Royal College of Art. Her final collection consisted of recycled plastic bath mats, and the plastic aesthetic just...stuck.

AW11 fringing

What Jane can do with plastic is quite incredible: fringing, armour-like geometric garments, cutout jackets and even knitwear pieces. And don't get me started on her accessories; headpieces a-plenty in all shapes and forms, necklaces and earrings made from iridescent painted neoprene. Bowler's work is so original that it's got to the point where I can go 'ah, it's a Bowler.' 

Ellie Goulding, Glamour Magazine

Her artistry and vision is paying off. Jane Bowler garments have garnered the attention of big-name celebrities (Nicki Minaj is one of the latest to buy into Bowler) and publications desperate to use her unique garments in shoots shot by photographic royalty.

Here are some of my favourite pieces from Bowler's collections so far:

AW13 Tesselate
AW13 Tesselate

I love Bowler's headpieces, as shown on the left. The jacket on the right is made of plastic and apparently is really uncomfortable to wear - but magazines love novelty items like these for styling shoots.
SS13 Undercurrent
The way Bowler has used plastic to recreate fish-scales (or mermaids - let your imagination run away with you) for the Undercurrent collection is perfect for layering.

As is the AW14 collection. Featuring plenty of garments with cutouts allows for ample layering opportunities.

AW12 Transcendency 
The plastic in the SS14 collection almost resembles feathers on the bodice. I love the way the look created is contrasting - it emphasises that featherlike detail on the top.

Jane's fringing is absolutely enthralling to me; the movement these garments create is very appealing.

AW12 Transcendency
AW12 Transcendency 

The pieces of the Transcendency collection show the pure technical ability of Bowler and her team. The plastic is manipulated to create voluminous sleeves.

There is a variety of silhouettes in the collection, and again - brilliant accessories. The collection is tied together with subtle links between garments (see the fringing on the sleeves of the garment on the far right), aiding in cohesion.

If you've got a taste for Bowler designs now that I've showcased her work so far in her career, you can help to fund her future ventures - and in return own a piece of Jane Bowler artistry - by buying her limited edition and one-off designs through her Kickstarter page.

All images via Jane Bowler's website

Treat yourself! And be happy in knowing that you are supporting not only an emerging designer, but also London's thriving fashion scene. (Jane runs workshops for those who are interested in garment and jewellery design - not just at the V&A but in her own studios.) Let's help London maintain its status as the fashion capital for new talent and innovation.

Keep on top of what's new with Jane Bowler designs by:

I hope you enjoyed this post and will keep an eye out for Jane Bowler's work, and help fund her SS15 Lookbook and Fashion Film.

All the best - and happy Fashion month! It's going to be a busy one.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...